Gianluca is very different from Piero and Ignazio. He had a calm and peaceful childhood. He didn’t have the challenges that Ignazio had or the intense classical education that Piero had. No, Gianluca lived a very simple life. Perhaps that explains why Gianluca is a romantic. With him, everything is about passion! Like his passion for Abruzzo which he takes around the world. On tour he always speaks about Abruzzo. He loves his country and, he wants others to love it too! I agree with Gianluca, Abruzzo is an amazing place. My maternal grandparents were from Abruzzo!
Gianluca’s life began in the small town of Montepagano where he lived a simple life but, when he emerged, he began a journey that would take him around the world and through his amazing voice would leave his mark in every corner of that world.
Let’s listen to how Gianluca describes the town he grew up in:
To be precise, I grew up, in Montepagano, on a hill two hundred meters as the crow flies and ten minutes by road from the sea, and Roseto degli Abruzzi.
The accents are beautiful, the dialects are beautiful, but I can say that what I prefer is the Abruzzese? I am, very, proud to be from Abruzzo. I love everything about this region. And I like to bring Abruzzo around the world and keep it high.
I am right at the sea. I’m relaxing, I’m calm! There is a sea breeze and nothing else. It’s Thursday and I am practically alone on the beach. I’m fine, from God! I’m fine because I’m home.
When Gianluca goes home to Abruzzo, he feels like he is on vacation. Montepagano is a very beautiful town. It sits at the top of a hill facing the Adriatic Sea. It is like a picture-perfect postcard! It’s no wonder Gianluca is at peace here. Montepagano is Gianluca’s paradise.
If you ask Gianluca about this paradise and how he spent his childhood there he will tell you, “My life as a child seems so far away. I remember, very, little of my childhood! It’s like twenty years have passed but, only five have passed. I’m not like Ignazio I was born and raised in Montepagano. I was traveling only with dreams. What made me dream? Music naturally.”
And, so, we come to perhaps Gianluca’s greatest passion, Music! Or let’s say our greatest passion about Gianluca, his music!
As you know, Gianluca’s mother worked, so, he went to after-school session with the nuns. He had a teacher named Gabriella. One afternoon, while Gianluca was doing homework, he suddenly got up and started singing “Time to Say Goodbye.” The teacher was speechless. “What a voice you have, what a wonderful voice,” she told Gianluca. “But do you know Andrea Bocelli?” She could not believe how it was possible for such a small child to have such a voice and to know a singer of that kind. “Of course, I know him,” Gianluca said, “he’s my idol, my favorite singer,” Gianluca said this with a certain pride. “Only I do not have his CD yet.” “I’ll bring it to you tomorrow, I’ll gift it to you” was the teacher’s answer. “I was seven, maybe eight years old and thanks to Gabriella I was able to start listening to Andrea Bocelli as often as I wanted.”
Yes, this was Gianluca’s passion as a young boy to sing Bocelli songs. And he sang them all the time. But it was music itself that motived Gianluca. In an interview with the “Rosetana Star” Gianluca said: “Music for me is the oxygen of my life.”
And it wasn’t just Bocelli as Gianluca will tell you. “As I grew older, I became more passionate about singing, including the great American classics, first of all Frank Sinatra.”
So, let’s turn to the Voice! Sinatra was known as the Voice. But I think Sinatra would be in awe of Gianluca. Love you Frank but Gianluca’s got this one!
Gianluca is known as the Velvet Voice!
I don’t who coined the phrase but, that is right on. Let’s use our senses to understand what that means. Take a piece of velvet and hold it in your hand. Now take your other hand and gently pass your hand across the velvet. What do you feel? You feel a smooth even surface that is crisp with no breaks in it. The sensation is so good that you automatically go back and do it again. And every time it’s the same. It’s pleasing!
Now take Gianluca’s voice, let the notes pass into your ears, what do you hear? A crisp, smooth, even voice with no breaks in it. The note barely passes into your ear and, you are going back for the next note. It’s always pleasing!
Gianluca is a lyrical baritone. He is exceptional because he can sing from the lowest to the highest note in the baritone range. Most baritones are limited in range. Gianluca’s voice is huge. He has a very rich chest resonance which creates a feeling of depth and drama in his voice.
A baritone’s voice is very romantic, very pleasing to listen to and is always inviting. Most songs are written for baritones. Gianluca starts, almost, every song. Why? In order for a song to be received well you must draw your audience into it. Gianluca’s voice draws you in in a romantic way and you hang on to every note. He can mesmerize you with songs like “Mi Mancherai” where he reaches into the depth of his being and yours. His interpretation of “Surrender” is electrifying. But, when Gianluca sings, “She’s Always a Woman”, he takes your breath away. The highs, the lows, the emotion, the expression. His voice expands like nothing I ever heard before. He has total command of the song. You walk away with your senses lifted to another level.
So, let’s turn to how Gianluca got to where he is today! To do this I need to introduce you to the Zecchino d’oro .
Why the Zecchino d’oro or perhaps you’re saying what is the Zecchino d’oro?
I was first introduced to the Zecchino d’orolast November when an article came out saying the Zecchino d’oro will be postponed due to Covid 19. The presenters of the year would be Mara Venier and Carlo Conti.
When I read this article, I immediately thought of Gianluca. So, what is the Zecchino d’oro and what does it have to do with Gianluca?
The Zecchino d’oro is an Italian tradition. It is an event for kids, and it is dedicated to them and to all the adults who still feel like kids.
This show is presented every year between late November and the beginning of December.
In Italy there are magical days, when it starts to get cold, and children stay in their warm homes. It’s not Christmas, but the period that precedes it when the famous Zecchino d’oro TV show is broadcast. It has been broadcast every year, for decades. It was established in 1959 by Cino Tortorella who was the good presenter who introduced the children on stage, disguised as Mago Zurlì. He was so loved by all children.
The Zecchino d’oro is the festival of the little ones. In fact, if the Sanremo Festival is aimed at adult audiences and the songs are interpreted by adults, the Zecchino d’oro is made for children, with songs tailored for children.
The songs may seem like simple songs but, they are actually much more. Special attention is given to the songs’ texts. The themes are about tolerance and peace. And this is confirmed by the expression of the event: “In this contest, the winner is not the child who sings, but the song that is sung!”
Father Berardo Rossi, one of the founders, discovered by chance, a girl who used to teach the children of his parish and organize events. Mariele Ventre, who was 22 years old, had just graduated from the Verdi Conservatory in Milan and was on her way to a promising concert career. She said yes to Fr. Rossi’s proposal and the adventure began.
Mariele liked the name Zecchino because it refers to the gold coin in the field of miracles of Collodi’s Pinocchio and thus it was called Zecchino d’oro. She founded the Piccolo Coro two years later, an institution that she would direct passionately for thirty years, until the last day before she died on December 16, 1995. Upon her death the Piccolo Coro dell’Antoniano, was renamed Piccolo Coro for Mariele.
Zecchino d’oro, however, is not only music and entertainment, but it has also been carrying out voluntary initiatives by raising funds to build schools, hospitals, orphanages, with projects all over the world, to help the less fortunate live better lives.
In 2008, the Zecchino d’oro received an amazing recognition from UNESCO, becoming a world heritage for a culture of peace: the first TV show in the world to receive such a prestigious award.
This year the images were to be reassuring to Italy. The country had the strength to bet on good feelings and a strong idea of safeguarding children.
Though you may not know this show in America, we can relate to one of the characters, Topo Gigio, the puppet created by Maria Perego. Topo Gigio landed in America many years ago on the legendary Ed Sullivan Show. For those of you who are not old enough to remember Topo Gigio, let me say we waited every week for his appearance on the show. For us kids and the adults he became a household name. Seems hard to believe that this little mouse stole the hearts of the American people.
So where does Gianluca fit into all of this? If it wasn’t for the Piccolo Choir of Roses which was inspired by the Zecchino d’oro, Gianluca may not have been discovered.
Gianluca was a member of the Piccolo Choir of Roses which is one of the local branches of this choir. The Mago Zurlì, who was the presenter of the event when Gianluca was in the Choir, was Gianluca’s father, Ercole Ginoble.
But, let me let Gianluca tell you how this all came to be….
When I sing, I don’t forget instinct. What does that mean? As I said, I have never studied singing. I learned to “use” my voice only thanks to my musical ear. I listened to the music and, it transmits everything I know. And I especially thank the Little Choir of Roses.
When I was about eight or nine, all those who knew my voice gave me the same advice: go sing in a choir. In Roseto there was the Piccolo Choir of Roses directed by the master Susy Paola Rizzo. They sang the songs of the “Zecchino d’oro” or other famous songs with arrangements in that style, with music for children. The Mago Zurlì, that was the presenter of the event, was my father. He had been for a couple of seasons.
This is where I started. It was nice because we studied the songs throughout the winter season, not the technique of singing, the songs. It was different, because we did not study the notes and how to do them, rather we studied instinctively, following what the teacher said and what our ear heard.
Then, in the summer, we demonstrated our work in the Municipality of Roseto. We sang in the squares during the local festivals, in the lidos, in the bathing establishments, around the whole of Abruzzo, all these tiny villages.
During the performances with the choir, besides the repertoire of the Zecchino d’oro, we sang the songs of Bocelli: Misere, Il Mare Calmo Della Sera, La Voce Del SilenzIo.
Of course, the greatest achievement for Gianluca and the guys was winning Sanremo! We know that it was Gianluca who convinced the guys to go to Sanremo! Or rather Gianluca convinced Piero who convinced Ignazio. And, in the end, Gianluca sums up Sanremo and the events that follow in this way!
The truth is that I was right from the beginning and, no one has ever listened to me, ever. I believed it so much that, if you notice, maybe I’m the one with the least surprised look when Carlo Conti announces the winner. Then, of those moments, one remembers little, there is great confusion, emotion. It was a dream to be able to shout, “Thank you, Italy!” from that stage. I looked at Sanremo as a child, when there was Pippo Baudo, and I was there and have won because people were on our side and it was a dream, I repeat even if I have already said. The emotion was only when my grandfather told me almost in tears: ‘Who would have told me that in my life I would see Modugno win at the Festival and then I see you win.’
On Sunday evening, when I returned to Montepagano, I found th whole village in a party, not just my grandfather: my countrymen were waiting for me from the morning to celebrate. There really was everyone, including the mayor. And then, the journalists, the local TV and a crowd of people who we could not count.
Another of the beautiful things that came after San Remo was the chance to meet the children of the Agbe, the Association of Parents of the Emopatic Children, of Pescara.
It is a reality born in 2000 from the idea of a group of parents, in fact, with children from the hemopaths treated at the Santo Spirito hospital in the city. The purpose of the association is to give support in every way to the children and families during and after the period of treatment. An initiative that, for those like me and very sensitive to the problems of health of children, and really beautiful.
The thing that honors me a lot and that, inspired by my story with Ti Lascio Una Canzone, they thought to have the children dedicate to singing, so they organize a Christmas show every year that keeps them very busy and also a lot of fun. But at Agbe they would never have thought we would meet.
Instead, after the Festival I went to see them, all young patients from 4 to 15 years, and I invited them to our concert of Il Volo Live 2015 in Chieti because I knew that Piero and Ignazio would have been happy to meet them. And, so, it was: they came, they had fun and we spent time together taking pictures and signing autographs.
But Gianluca is about emotions too! And many things that happened after Sanremo were emotional for Gianluca! Like Gianluca receiving a prize for bringing Abruzzo around the world. Let’s listen to Gianluca talk about the emotion of winning this prize.
When I talk about emotions that arrived after Sanremo, I cannot forget what it meant to receive a prize like Abruzzese that gives prestige to its region in the world.
Every year on August 5th is celebrated the Day of Abruzzesi in the world, a day set up with a regional law to remember all the emigrants. On that day five ambassadors of Abruzzo are appointed in the world, that is, Abruzzesi who have come out of the regional boundaries for different reasons and give prestige to their region.
For example, they awarded a university lecturer, a cardiologist, the founder of a cultural association, an entrepreneur and a successful executive. The ceremony, which has a different location every year, was held in the Fortress of Civitalla del Tronto, a village that is a jewel of the province of Teramo, right on the border with the Marches.
I, however, am still in Abruzzo and therefore I cannot be appointed ambassador according to regional regulations, I was awarded with a beautiful statuette that replicates the warrior Capestrano, for having brought the name of my land around the world.
I cannot tell you what a feeling it is to receive from the regional Presidency the cultural symbol of my region. The original of the warrior stands in the National Archaeological Museum, more than two meters tall, of limestone, with a large disk helmet that looks like a hat. You see it for sure. And it is one of the things I’m most proud of.
In short, Sanremo was just a dream that brought us many different emotions.
Gianluca has a heart of gold! It’s always about helping others whether through his generosity or his love of his country! That’s just how Gianluca is. He has his hand in everything and reaches it out to those who need it!
But it seems I digressed!
So now, let me go back and sum up Gianluca’s musical career! Although Gianluca never studied music he did develop a musical ear and instinct and as a member of the Piccolo Choir of Roses and his performances around Abruzzo, he was discovered by Licia Giunco who brought Gianluca to Rome to audition for Ti Lascio Una Canzone. The rest of the story is history!
And as a result of this, Gianluca Shares His Amazing Voice with people all over the world!
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!
A few days ago a short video was published that reports some questions (perhaps asked by the fans) to which Il Volo answered.
I believe they were made before the tribute concert at the Arena.
These are a handful of questions, but it’s nice to see how Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca react and make fun of each other!
The comment accompanying the video is: “Here we are, with unexpected questions, sincere answers, laughter and curiosity.” Part 1 (so it is assumed that there will be more short videos like that.)
I translate for you:
QUESTION = Can you tell me about an event that has remained close to your heart, which happened with your fans?
PIERO = NO
QUESTION = Have you ever changed or forgotten the lyrics of a song?
IGNAZIO = Do you know how many times we have forgotten the words during a concert !!
PIERO = It was a piece in French, TUS LES VISAGES DE L’AMOUR …. and I forgot the words, I didn’t remember anything.
QUESTION = Who often forgets their socks?
PIERO = Him (and points to Ignazio)
IGNAZIO = Who, I? It’s Gianluca!
GIANLUCA = Me ?? You! (points to Ignazio)
IGNAZIO = Me? You! (points to Piero) 😁😁😁
QUESTION = Favourite song?
IGNAZIO = As of today, with the project we are doing: YOUR LOVE.
QUESTION = A ritual you do before a concert?
IGNAZIO = One of the things we often do is shake hands, (he joins his hands) like this.
QUESTION = Favorite movie?
IGNAZIO = THE TRUMAN SHOW
PIERO = No! NUOVO CINEMA PARADISO.
GIANLUCA = GOOD WILL HUNTING, with Robin Williams
This photo, published on the official page of Il Volo, informs us that on 9 September, Il Volo will be present in the Arena di Verona, at the Seat Music Awards event, an event where all the artists who have achieved their goals are awarded and certainly Il Volo. will be present for the Gold Record obtained with the sales of the 10-year CD.
Well, it is an event full of artists and music and very popular with young people, we will hear that song (usually only one) presents Il Volo.
The photo is accompanied by this comment: “Hello #ilvololovers, we are delighted to inform you that this year we will participate in the #SeatMusicAwards at the Verona Arena and we can’t wait.
It is always a great honor for us to sing in the suggestive atmosphere of the Arena!
See you in September!”
Another very nice video starring Gianluca, was published by visitRoseto.it.
It is entitled Gianluca Ginoble-Multimedia tourist guide of Roseto degli Abruzzi, and in fact, who better than Gianluca, so proud of his land, can highlight the beauties of Montepagano?
In addition, the Belvedere is very close to his home.
I translate for you:
We are certainly in one of the most beautiful places on the Adriatic coast.
I am biased, however, we are in Montepagano, in the Belvedere, the place where I grew up and looking out from here certainly helps to appreciate the true meaning of life.
Being able to look at the sea from afar and appreciate the sound of the sea waves, this wonderful sound that is like music.
I grew up on music, and as maestro Ennio Morricone said “from silence great works of art are born”.
So I invite you to be here and to look out from this wonderful place, to really be able to appreciate the good things in life, music and the sea, which have one great thing in common, are a great work of art.
Very good Gianluca and to lend you for these relaunch messages of your country, it does you honor.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympics have just ended, but we could not show you this nice video of a Mexican gymnast, Rut Castillo, performing her rhythmic gymnastics exercise with the ribbon on the well-known notes of El Triste, sung by Il Volo!!
And now let’s see what our three have posted.
In early August, they went to Milan, to Sony and then to do a photo shoot, perhaps for the new CD?
Here are the photos posted by those who took care of their appearance.
It’s also vacation time and let’s find out where our young men are.
Ignazio is always the one who publishes very little, his few photos are almost always published by others, he almost never publishes.
Here he is again at a wedding.
Piero remained in his Sicily, often photographed in Taormina.
Here, Piero with his sister Mariagrazia.
With his friend Dario Mirabile.
Surely the most prolific of photos and videos is undoubtedly Gianluca.
Here he is driving a luxurious convertible car, which I believe is not his?
(Click on photo below to hear Gianluca singing Fly Me to the Moon)
Maybe the car was used for the cousin’s wedding?
And then Gianluca, with his inevitable twin friends, allows himself a nice sport trip in the Tirino valley.
The Tirino river valley is a beautiful green lung, rich in history, nature and culture.
It is the heart of Abruzzo.
Gianluca says: “We have to take a picture, these are indelible moments.”
That’s it Gian !!
Beautiful places, but what an effort, in the end, a well-deserved rest!
And then, also for Gianluca, a few days in the beautiful Taormina!
It is also a good opportunity to attend the Rigoletto, the Ancient Theater, an opera directed by Placido Domingo.
Gianluca in the midst of two interpreters of Rigoletto. On the left, his friend Dave Monaco, who is also part of the Torpedine stable.
And so, after some effort and a lot of fun, we have reached August 15th.
Once, here in Italy, it was the only day of vacation for those who worked, today it is considered the culmination of summer: Ferragosto (literally means August grilled, that is very hot), this is the name of the feast of August 15th.
This year it is really very hot, in Sicily there was the highest temperature in Europe, almost 120 ° Faherenheit, and unfortunately there were also many fires.
There are infections of the Delta variant on the rise, but since there are so many vaccinated, the situation is under control there are no problems, for now, in hospitals.
August 15 is also the feast of the Assumption, a religious holiday, very much felt here.
In my story today I am taking you back to the very beginning! I want to tell you a little something about the guys in their early years. I will be using excerpt from the book the guys wrote and various interviews they did about the book. This is just a small piece of each man’s story.
We begin by journeying back to Naro, Bologna and Montepagano where it all began, to meet, our guys as little children.
The stories are very sweet and sometimes very sensitive. I found myself in tears reading the beautiful accounts of their special lives. In one of the stories, I had to stop reading and take a breath because it was like I was reading my own story. I had experienced the same thing in my life and I understood where he was coming from and I felt his pain in my heart with every word he spoke! I’ve been there!
In some way I have a connection to each of these guys. In Gianluca’s case we are connected by country, my maternal grandparents where from Abruzzi but the beach we visited when we were in Abruzzi was Pescara. My connection with Piero is his family. He came from the same kind of family I did. Dinners with the entire family and summers in the countryside. As for Ignazio I have an emotional attachment to him. Ignazio sings with passion and, I write with passion. Many people have said when I write about Ignazio I write with the same passion as he has when he sings. I think this is because we are both very sensitive and we are alike in many ways. We have many of the same traits!
Let me begin by saying each one of the guys is unique in how he presents his story. Piero and Gianluca dictated their stories but, Ignazio chose to write his story. He has a writing technique very similar to mine. When he writes he speaks directly to the reader! He comes in and out of the story speaking to the reader and asking questions. He is an excellent writer.
Piero is a great storyteller! In his stories he recalls every detail. He makes you feel like you’re a part of his story. When the story is over you know the event as it happened and there is nothing more for you to know. He’s told it all! He is very serious and emotional when he speaks about his childhood and his family.
Gianluca is very different from Piero and Ignazio. He had a calm and peaceful childhood. He didn’t have the challenges that Ignazio had or the intense classical education that Piero had. No, Gianluca lived a very simple life. Perhaps that explains why Gianluca is a romantic.
So, without further ado, let’s begin with….
All of what is said here was said by Ignazio in his story. I did not change the thoughts or feelings of Ignazio or any of the guys in any of their stories. All the Italics are their own words. You might say I’m relating the story as seen through my eyes. Ignazio as the narrator gives you the facts and I follow him by giving you information that is important to the story.
This is a very, sensitive and sincere story!
“If a life is a story and, if every story needs someone to tell it, here I am to tell you mine, all of it from the beginning.” ~ Ignazio Boschetto
My story is not a fictional story even if it seems to be one of those dreams that you never want to wake up from. My story is sincere. It is the story of my life just as I experienced it before Il Volo and inside Il Volo.
My flight (every reference is purely coincidental) starts with a Christmas Letter.
It seems Ignazio’s mother, Caterina, and his father, Vito, were thinking about expanding their family. It is Christmas time 1993. Ignazio’s sister Antonia, who everyone calls Nina, is at school and the children are told to write a letter to Santa and the Baby Jesus. What Nina writes is a miracle and the beginning of one of the most beautiful and sincere relationships between a brother and sister. Nina, 7 years old, writes:
Dear Santa and Baby Jesus,
I do not want any presents for Christmas. Give my gifts to poor children. I want a baby brother for Christmas.
Ignazio continues, Said and done!
Shortly after New Year’s Caterina discovers she is pregnant. When Nina is told she wants to confirm that her wish has come true. Nina asks her mother if she can join her for her ultrasound. During the checkup, Nina asks the doctor, “May I know what it is?”
“What do you want, honey?” the doctor asks.
“I want a little brother.”
“Then come, I’ll show you the string bean.”
Nina’s first wish is granted but her second wish, not exactly! Nina wants her brother to be born on October 1st, her birthday. It seems Ignazio had another idea.
My name is Ignazio Boschetto. I was born on October 4th, 1994 in Bologna, Italy.
No, I didn’t make it for Nina’s birthday. I was wrong. What can I tell you? When they brought me home, I was better than any doll to Nina. Everyone was happy but soon, there are some worries. During the first visit, the doctor found that I had a strange kidney malfunction. After several checkups, they found I was born with a single kidney, but the one kidney I had was larger than normal and it works as if it were two kidneys.
And, as if that wasn’t enough, I was born with the squint of Venus, but I was fine, a Bolognese, brand new. The truth is, I could have been born Sicilian – Sienese. How would you see me with a Tuscan accent?
Ignazio continues his story always keeping in mind that his life is possible because of the sacrifices of his parents.
Is it the same if the images that I will never forget are … the memories of my parents? It’s not that I’m crazy or strange, it’s right that my story would never have existed without my parents.
In 1990, Ignazio’s parents made the decision to leave Marsala. They left with the hope of a better life for their family. As Ignazio says, “The family they had only begun to create.” Within a few years they managed to achieve economic stability and were able move into a house. Ignazio says, “The house was very small, but it was my first house, the one in which I was born.”
Of all the houses I lived in, one particular address remains in my mind: Via Marconi 94 in Molinella. It was a big and very beautiful house. We moved there just before I started elementary school. I do not remember the first day of school, but I certainly did not take long to get noticed. If you’re thinking of scenes of me being put in the middle of the class to sing, forget it. I had a passion for music but, I had an even greater passion for pranks. I tell you, since I started talking and walking, mine was an escalation of agitation. But it was official I was not the most mischievous in class that would be my friend Nicholas. I was second.
Now I would not want you to get the wrong idea of me as a child. A saint I was not, mind you, but thinking about it now if I was mischievous at school, maybe there was a reason.
In 1998, when Ignazio was four years old his mom was diagnosed with facial cancer. For a child of Ignazio’s age, it was hard to understand what was happening.
Mom did something she always did with us, for as long as I can remember, she explained the situation to us, speaking openly. This is a great merit that I must acknowledge about my family, but perhaps a little more to mom, because the fact of speaking clearly with us children and telling us the truth about things that affected our family and life in general taught us to face up to early adult conversations.
Now, I’m going to step out of the story because there are no words that I can say that will express the emotion and the sensitivity of Ignazio words.
I do not even have to tell you that since my mother’s conversation, my life has changed. I was small, but I could not afford to think like the other children of my age. As for my sister the situation was even more complicated because since 1998, the year of our mother’s first hospitalization, until 2003, the year when all the bad story is over, my mother has become Nina. For the first two years of elementary school, I have not often seen mom, a little because I went to school, a little because she had to return frequently to the hospital and stay there for long periods. Dad worked and my sister, despite her twelve years, had to be a housewife. She has become my biggest reference point. We had to grow both of us very quickly, without thinking about toys and different entertainment, and not so to speak, but really. The truth is that we were not interested in anything that usually affects two children of that age, because the only thing we wanted was to have mom at home.
It is difficult to say what was the worst moment because her absence was always felt. For sure, however, I was particularly impressed by a quarrel with my sister. I was four and she was twelve and I was playing with a toy, she was fed up because I made noise, she took the toy and, we had a fight. After responding badly to her, I immediately repented. For me Nina was very important, really like a mother. In the end I did not sleep for a week. But I never told her, at least until now.
After five surgeries and one hundred and fifty points in the face, mom has returned home. Too bad they did not leave me much time to enjoy her. I wanted to sit her on the sofa and, I wanted all the kisses, hugs and everything I haven’t had in those years. Mom is mine and woe to those who touch her! And instead, a few years earlier, mom had started working in a pizzeria and, not even the time to leave the hospital, she rightly started working again. What could I do?
Let’s move on to Montepagano!
With Gianluca, everything is about passion! Actually, four passions! Family, Country, Music, Soccer! Not necessarily in that order! He takes his passion for Abruzzo around the world. On tour he always speaks about Abruzzo. He loves his country and, he wants others to love it too!
My name is Gianluca Ginoble. I was born on February 11th, 1995 at the Atri hospital.
“I am from the town of Montepagano, Abruzzo. To be precise, I grew up in Montepagano, on a hill two hundred meters as the crow flies and ten minutes by road from the sea, and Roseto degli Abruzzi.” ~ Gianluca Ginoble
The accents are beautiful, the dialects are beautiful, but I can say that what I prefer is the Abruzzese? I am, very, proud to be from Abruzzo. I love everything about this region. And I like to bring Abruzzo around the world and keep it high.
My life as a child seems so far away. I remember, very, little of my childhood! It’s like twenty years have passed but, only five have passed. I’m not like Ignazio, I was born and raised in Montepagano. I was traveling only with dreams. What made me dream? Music naturally.
Dad, Ercole and mom, Eleanora realized that I had something special in my voice when I started to sing at the age of three or four years. They tell me, when I was three years old, I sang ‘O Sole Mio’ in the town square in front of all the elderly gentlemen friends of my grandfather who were sitting around in the square.
This was Gianluca’s first audience but, of course he doesn’t remember it.
Because Eleanora worked, Gianluca went to after-school session with the nuns. He had a teacher named Gabriella. One afternoon, while Gianluca was doing homework, he suddenly got up and started singing “Time to Say Goodbye.” The teacher was speechless. “What a voice you have, what a wonderful voice,” she told Gianluca. “But do you know Andrea Bocelli?” She could not believe how it was possible for such a small child to have such a voice and to know a singer of that kind. “Of course, I know him,” Gianluca said, “He’s my idol, my favorite singer,” Gianluca said this with a certain pride. “Only I do not have his CD yet.” “I’ll bring it to you tomorrow, I’ll gift it to you,” was the teacher’s answer.”
I was seven, maybe eight years old and thanks to Gabriella I was able to start listening to Andrea Bocelli as often as I wanted.
Are you wondering why I suddenly sang ‘Time to Say Goodbye?’ The answer is simple: because it made me feel good. Usually, I would sing at home or in situations where I felt protected as if I were at home. I did not care to make myself heard by others. It also happened that at school the teacher knew my particular voice and she would make me sing in the classroom. “Gianluca, let us hear your voice, guys, let’s listen to Gianluca sing.” Do you know how I reacted? I sang, of course, because it was the teacher who asked, but first I went to hide behind the blackboard and put myself face to the wall. I was ashamed to die. I still remember that feeling of being hidden, while I sang, without seeing anyone. Also, because I was already singing with this voice that tended to the baritone, it was really special. I understood that it was a beautiful thing, which everyone liked, but I was still ashamed. Dad says I also did it at home to turn my face to the wall while I was singing. What could I do? I was very shy and a little insecure.
But now, the shyness is over. Gianluca considered this a defect when he was a child but now, he has overcome the shyness. What hasn’t changed is the constant need for confirmation. On social networks, you see his selfies and people think he is vain, but in reality, he needs constant fan approval. He needs to know that they support him. Gianluca has been this way since he was a child. He always needed reassurances. If he only knew how much his fans love him, he would need no reassurances!
Time to move on to Naro.
Let’s join Piero in the courtyard of the town square of Naro.
The heat of the day has passed, the time of rest is over and it’s time for people to come out into the square. On the bench nearby are old men. Piero is playing soccer with his friends. They are playing with his SUPER TELE (a plastic football). The ball flies off in the direction of the old men and they shout, “Slow with the ball or we will cut it.” The old men frighten Piero with their threat.
My name is Piero Barone. I was born on June 24th, 1993 in the Sicilian city of Naro.
(Francesco and Piero Barone)
What can I tell you about Naro? For me, it is the most beautiful city in the world! There are dozens of baroque churches and above the city the Chiaramonte castle. Below the castle is the beautiful Valle del Paradiso with its green pastures and the green sea that separates Naro from the real sea… and there’s the Spring Festival Narese!
I would gather with my friends in the afternoon and usually we played until ten in the evening but there was always the fear that the old men would pierce the ball.
Five or six years have passed since the old men scared me. The old men are still on the bench but now when they see me, they come to meet me, to greet me. Before, they scared me, and now they hug me and have that look of being proud and moved. It’s too strong for me! Yet, I still can’t explain why I become ‘weak inside’ when I see them.
“The truth is, I’m still that kid with his SUPER TELE.” ~ Piero Barone
For Piero life is all about Naro and the family and his fondest memories are of his childhood and his family….
I think it is an effort to remember when we were young. We were young the day before yesterday. In fact, all three of us, feel that time has run too fast. Yesterday we were children, and, in a moment, we found ourselves grown up with a great job to carry on. It’s the most beautiful job in the world, what we dreamed and desired, but the truth is that none of us really imagined what would happen.
I remember in detail the years from one to fourteen…. I recall for a few months, during the summer, when I was nine years old, I went to work in my father’s body shop but because I had bad allergies and asthma I was not able to deal with the paints and powders so, the decision was made that I would go to work in my uncle Angelo’s (my mother’s brother) mechanic shop which was just in front of my father’s shop. I clearly recall, at half past ten, on time, my uncle gave me two euros and I went to buy a sandwich at the supermarket. The sandwich was ham and provolone. ‘How good was that sandwich!’
What I’ve done in the last five or six years, I tend to forget. Not because I’m not happy to have done it, on the contrary, I am, very, happy. It’s to have the life I have and have a dream come true: living with music was all I wanted.
When I was a child, I visited my father’s body shop. The shop was, very, big and was full of cars and lots of noise. This was my “first stage.” I was not yet four years old, and I was starting to sing. My father lifted me up and placed me on the hood of a car that was jacked up and I immediately began to sing. The people in front of the shop looked out. Slowly one after another, they came out. I remember them, they stood there listening to me, their heads popping out of the door and, I sang and, it was the most natural thing in the world for me!
But what remains in Piero’s heart is what he calls the “campaign” of his grandparents.
How do I explain this campaign? I think “campaign” and I think “family” a couple that cannot be divided.
Piero compares this campaign to his mother, Elenora, and his father, Gaetano. He sees their marriage as an example of love that he hopes to one day share with someone. Piero says,
I want someone with whom I can carry on that love that is so great even in times of difficulty.
And part of that love, Piero explains, comes from the closeness of his family.
I am proud to say mine is a real Sicilian family, one of those that on Sundays reunites at the grand house, the grandparents’ house. Together we are mom and dad with me and my brother and my sister, my grandfather, my grandmother and my uncle, my great-grandmother, my grandmother’s sister, her husband and their three children, who are the same age as us and for me they are like another brother and two other sisters.And there were great lunches from the first to the sweets, things so good that you cannot even imagine them. And the saga continues, when summer arrives and, everyone moves to the countryside.
Piero’s fondly remembers a family tradition…
I could not wait for it to be Saturday morning when we lit the wood burning oven. I went to collect wood around the ground, I helped to light the fire, and I helped to take out the pizza. In addition to pizza, we did “u pani impurnatu”, which is bread baked in the oven. How good it was! It kept that good taste all week. The week passed and the next Saturday we started over again. The bread was beautiful, warm and fragrant. We also made the “impanate”, which are rolls of pizza dough with vegetables inside, a typical dish of my area. In short, I ate a lot of good things and, it was visible (I was really fat).
We have now met the guys at the very beginning of their lives. What have we learned from each boy? We learned they come from very simple, very humble families. Hard working families. Not unlike the other children they grew up with. Their days were spent playing, being mischievous and singing on impulse. The one thing everyone comes back to in their story is their music. Piero tells us living with music was all he wanted. Ignazio tells us between the mischief, there was always the passion for music. And Gianluca says he sang because it made him feel good.
It seems for these young men not much has changed over the years. In the Beginning There was Music and not much has changed over the years except that now they share it with us!
Join me next week as I go back Through the Fields of My Mind and open the door to a new adventure!
Since you liked the first part of the interview Felicità a lot, here is the second part, starting at minute 27:04.
Happy reading everyone.🤗
(A Chi Mi Dice video begins.)
PV = (voice) The dreams of glory of three boys from the provinces, who have already become, by Divine will, icons of global music. Three young people with their heads on their shoulders, who despite their success, continue to speak with the humility that befits adults.
It is precisely from their last words, which underline the awareness of the privilege of sharing strong emotions, and the indissoluble union on stage, despite three different characters, that the values with which they were educated are understood: Ignazio, Gianluca and Piero.
Humility, work and growing interest in culture, values that all young people, whatever their interests, must treasure.
(The video of Il Volo begins with Laura Pausini in NYC 2014.)
The contagious enthusiasm of the new lady Golden Globe, and Oscar nominated artist, to put it in the American way: Miss Laura Pausini, in introducing Il Volo on the New York stage a few years ago (2014), relaunches the discussion on the growing global appreciation of the three young artists, loved everywhere, for the ease with which they propose themselves on every occasion, be it classic or pop.
An equally engaging state of mind that of Ignazio, Piero and Gianluca, like that of the “ex Pausella da Solarolo”, (Pausella is a nickname to say Laura Pausini, she grew up in a town called Solarolo) which allowed her to become, in effect, the new young lady of Italian song in the world.
For the pupils of Michele Torpedine (Il Volo), discovered by Antonella Clerici and Roberto Cenci, and launched for the first time in the world by Tony Renis, the path is still long and full of expectations, but with youngsters like that, we must not ask ourselves about limits.
PIERO = I read a review on Beniamino Gigli’s book, made by a friend of his who went to visit him, before a concert and Gigli had just finished vocalizing.
His friend asks him if he still continues to study, and when was the last time he studied and Gigli replies: “Five minutes ago!”
Beniamino Gigli was already at the peak of success.
Talent is a gift that God gives you, but maturity allows you to cultivate it and study every day, there will be a reason why all the great ones continue to study.
Clearly we are now mature, we know how to study and what to study.
Our strength is our team.
A few days ago we received the news of the success of the Verona Arena, we hugged, we with our team, because it is not just the three of us, the three of us go on stage, but behind us there is the management and I have to tell you that the mentor of IL Volo is Michele Torpedine, because it is he who stimulates us to create new ideas.
PV = Sure!!
PIERO = We are too young to have so much creativity.
PV = Clear.
PIERO = He is far-sighted, he sees beyond.
When we go on stage and we get a great success, I was telling you about the success of a few days ago, we hugged each other and we said: “Never change a winning team”.
It is also confronting every day, even with points of view …..
PV = With different points of view, of course.
PIERO = …. different points of view, because now we are mature, but there are no more teasing, no more spites.
PV = Why were there?
IGNAZIO = When we were little it was normal, then we also have three different characters, we also have three very strong personalities the three of us, so it’s normal that we went against our ideas.
(beautiful video of Il Tuo Sguardo Manca, made at the Verona Arena)
PV = (to Torpedine) How difficult was it to keep three young men with strong personalities together, who evidently manage to find a common agreement on stage?
TORPEDINE= It was much more difficult at first, because they were children, they even fought over the place in the car. 😁
Today they are three adult and intelligent people, but the nice thing about Il Volo, unlike other artists, is that although today they cover most of the world (they are famous in most of the world), they are very simple people.
PV = Where will Il Volo arrive? (where their success will come? how far will they go?)
TORPEDINE= I have been telling them for some time that the best is yet to come. When they will have the credibility of mature people, and prove that their voices are crazy, I always tell them that big success is yet to come.
But it will come, because there is no such thing in the world. (Meaning the guys of IL VOLO are the only ones who present such a repertoire and with these qualities in the world.)
(The song of UN AMORE COSÌ GRANDE starts, which links to images of Ischia – Italian island near Capri)
PV = (voice) In the journey of these three guys, there was also a very nice parenthesis that I want to remember, because the first international audience they had was in Ischia, in 2010 during the Ischia Global Film Music Festival. The three came, very young, I must say very jaunty, with their families, very carefree, but they were already concentrated there, in the recording room, they were making the album, with great commitment and they did a concert in Sant Angelo Ischia, in front of a Hollywood audience, Jeremy Renner, Channing Tatum, Rosario Dawson, Ethel Graham and many other international actors.
The video of the evening in Sant Angelo Ischia begins, there is Tony Renis on the catwalk, these are his words:
TONY RENIS = It was Pascal who urged me, he told me: “Tony, this wonderful evening in this wonderful setting of Sant Angelo, you have to bring these three extraordinary kids. They are three fifteen-year-old boys, they are here and I introduce them to you: Gianluca, Gianluca Ginoble, Piero Barone and Ignazio Boschetto.”
PIERO = We want to dedicate this song to all mothers.
IGNAZIO = To all mothers, especially ours, but ….
PIERO = ….. but in particular to a great mother, Pascal’s mother.
GIANLUCA = Pascal’s mother.
TONY RENIS = (voice) As they say in Los Angeles, ladies and gentlemen: Il Volo.
(The song MAMMA begins.)
PV = (to Gian) But how much have you changed since Ischia, where you already had the fans outside the Regina Isabella (Hotel) who were besieging you?
GIAN = However, these are things that are not forgotten, because those who support you from the beginning ….. it is easy to support when there is success, so we thank you also for this, for this support that you have given us since the beginning.
In reality, we are not so different, we never lose that desire to do, to be a bit like those children who chase those dreams, to set goals and always improve.
So let’s say we still maintain that simplicity ……..
IGNAZIO = Now we are waiting for the renewal of the invitation (to the Ischia Global Film Festival).
PV = Of course, guys, this summer.
GIAN = HAWK’S EYE (Jeremy Renner), I also want TONY STARK (they are actors who play Avengers in the movies), you have to invite Robert Downey, Jr. too, he’s my favorite actor, you have to bring him.
ROBERT DOWNEY JR. I LOVE YOU.
IGNAZIO = If you want to invite Anne Hathaway too, I’m not sorry, I say. (humorous) 😁
PV = I see that Anne Hathaway is very strong, she has a strong passion for Italians …..
IGNAZIO = We too for her …
GIAN = If you bring me Robert Downey Jr., I’ll make you a statue. 😁
PV= But guys, I have to make the statue to you, to great young music legends.
IGNAZIO = He makes the statue for you and I place it next to that of Pino Daniele in Naples.
PV = Let’s not exaggerate guys.
Instead, how much have you personally changed, compared to when you were kids, you talked about magical moments in Rome, Los Angeles, Ischia.
I see you (to Ignazio), you are a young gentleman now.
IGNAZIO = No, we change, but it is normal that we change, it goes without saying.
PV = Sure
IGNAZIO = But not because we become more important, but because it is the age that dictates it, for nothing else. We are very proud of what we are doing, because it is all that the sacrifices are repaying us, the satisfactions. We are working hard, nothing ever falls from the tree, you have to go there, you have to climb and collect what you want to have.
We are really satisfied, change is normal, but we try to keep our origins, our traditions, our values, which are the most important thing, things that we have always tried not to lose along the way.
(The video MUSICA CHE RESTA starts.)
PV = Piero you are three very young exes (former children), who have made it, and you are still there, determined to grow more and more.
Instead, let’s talk to many young Italians, who are still there fighting for the first satisfaction of their life, what do we say to them?
PIERO = Our work is a dreamy job, we always think big, sometimes we succeed, sometimes we fail and that fear is the stimulus that makes you grow, it always keeps you going.
As for our peers, I do not feel able to give advice, but the only suggestion I could give is to believe in your talent, but above all in your passion, which sooner or later, life will give you that satisfaction.
(The video of Canzone Per Te begins.)
PV = Gianluca, when you go back to Abruzzo, and go around the streets where you took your first steps, not only artistic, but also in school, what is your feeling today?
GIAN = We were just talking about it the other day. Each of us lives it differently, but there is a strong gap between living the life of the country, because in any case I have not moved from Abruzzo, I live by the sea, and then, go around the world.
It is as if we lived two lives side by side, as if every now and then, we jump from one train to another, as if they were two tracks, right?
But we must try to maintain that normality that allows you not to lose the detachment with reality, because in any case, even if this is our life, we have adapted to change. It is a great privilege, somehow, to be able to live a life as a simple, normal boy, and then you have this privilege of living a life of a star, let’s say.
GIAN= We must know how to cultivate both things, know how to manage them, and never lose that humility, that simplicity.
PV= Ignazio, being Italian is a great privilege, let’s face it.
Let’s tell a little to the many young people who do not have the awareness of the world, that Italianness is a very important value.
IGNAZIO = Being Italian is a great honor for us because, only by hearing about it from various nationalities, you realize how our country is loved, respected, envied. Because we, in the end, have fantastic places, among the most beautiful in the world, people … that are the most beautiful in the world, because here you can find your dimension, with more reserved people (north) or with more people lively, like in the south, right?
So we live in a fantastic country and we just have to be proud of our flag. 😘
(The video for Per Te Ci Sarò begins.)
PV = (to Gian) But when you are on stage in Los Angeles, rather than South America, or China, or Russia and you start to see the Italian flags that come out, what’s the feeling, I get the chills just thinking such a thing.
GIAN= It is our culture, above all musical, that allows us to travel the world, you know it better than us, in short. It is the strength of this music, which allows us to conquer not only Italians abroad, but also audiences from all nations, and this is a great thing.
See the Italians who follow us, who by the way we greet, who are watching us in many …..
PV = Also through RAI ITALIA …
GIAN = Yes, exactly … who live our concerts with that nostalgia, with that tear that is the memory of a past life, and for us it is exciting to try to convey emotions to these people too, and we will return to tour very soon, we are preparing many beautiful things for you.
IGNAZIO = The beautiful thing, do you know what it is? It is not the fact of seeing an Italian with the Italian flag, which fits!
But it is seeing a Russian girl, with the Italian flag in her hand, a Japanese or Chinese girl with an Italian flag in her hand, a German boy, with the Italian flag in his hand, and there you realize that music does not place barriers to nationality to culture.
Music unites us!
PV = (to Piero) What do you dream of for your future?
PIERO = I dream of living music all my life.
PV = Enough for you?
PIERO = Music is everything to me.
PV = Yes?
PIERO = It’s my life.
PV = It is your life. (then, to Gian) And the family? Start a family?
GIAN = Eh ???? What does it mean???? ……
IGNAZIO = You asked the wrong person the question !!!
GIAN = (continuing to pretend not to understand) …… what does that mean ????
PV = (replies to Ignazio) Why what do you mean?
PIERO = Because he (Ignazio) is the romantic of the group.
IGNAZIO = It’s not that I’m romantic, it’s me who dreams of a family, he (Gianluca) maybe not ….. but it’s normal, we have different interests.
PV = He (Gianluca) is the playboy of the situation?
IGNAZIO = No, but you know, family is not always everyone’s goal, the goal is to feel good, feel good about yourself, feel good with another person, for some to have children, for some not, so it is very subjective.
I dream of having a family.
PV = How many children ??
IGNAZIO = At least three, at least.
PV = You already have the lady with whom …..
IGNAZIO = I have to hurry …..
GIAN = Hurry, no!! When you feel ready!
IGNAZIO = But I feel ready.
Did you understand? (he says to Pascal, as if to underline that he and Gian have different goals for the moment)
PV = (addressed to Piero) You instead?
PIERO = I am a person who comes from a family rich in values, clear, when love arrives, when the time is right, it is not prescribed.
PV = No, no, of course not.
Let’s close guys, the microphone and the camera to you, to look the fans in the eyes to tell them what?
GIAN = Thank you, we are coming back, get ready, because we are preparing something great for all of you.
PIERO = Thanks for your support, trust and love.
IGNAZIO = It was a difficult year, full of shortcomings, but also a lot of work.
See you soon 2022, many concerts.
PV = yes, definitely.
This is Il Volo, three ex (former) children that I met at the beginning and who today are three very successful men and therefore I am really happy today to have them with us.
HAPPINESS to all.
G + P + I = Thank you
I would say it was a long, but really good interview.
Gianluca, Ignazio and Piero showed, with their words, a great maturity, and Pascal asked them very relevant questions and recalled the salient moments of our boys’ careers, with great affection.
It is a pity that this beautiful interview had little relevance here in Italy, because it was announced at the last moment and broadcast at a rather strange time.
But we fans, we know how to give due credit to things of value.
I also included the video of IN ASSENZA DI TE with Laura Pausini in New York, because I thought that maybe many of you have never seen it.
I also thank all of you, for the wonderful comments for the translation of the first part of the interview, I hope you like the second as well.
There are various situations that can affect us in life, which we can find singular, rare or even unique. In 2009 happened, due to the combination of various factors, precisely one of these concentrations that not even elaborated by an expert alchemist would have been so perfect to create a union like the one that exists among the Il Volo boys.
One day, to go to a talent show in Rome, they left, completely unaware of what awaited them, two from Sicily and one from Abruzzo, more or less the same age, all three of provincial extraction, all three of modest families but respectable and respectful of the most important traditional values, and finally all three bearers of voices, although different, but of excellent quality for timbre, intonation and passion.
Precisely this exceptionality, this being different from all the others, immediately led them to a lightning career, something that never happened, an immediate contract with an American record company, triumphal tours around the world, applause and standing ovations. But this immediately involved a shared life for the three boys, who not only have three different voices, but also different personalities. As good as bread but sparkling Gianluca, funny and vibrant Ignazio, serious and perfectionist Piero.
A coexistence that could have been dangerous and even lead to a breakup, but having in common instead fundamental qualities such as the sense of duty, the kindness of soul and the ability to love, made possible for the three boys to find strength to stay together and gradually to esteem and amalgamate more and more, until they were united no longer by the need to travel and collaborate, but by a pure and disinterested friendship, completely free of rivalry and envy, by an ever deeper affection, to the point of no longer being friends, but brothers and to considering each other’s families as their own family.
In this they were also helped by the fact that the same type of collaboration, sincerity and affection had been established among their parents.
In short, a large family that found itself reunited in the greatest pain a few months ago when prematurely lost one of its members, Vito, Ignazio’s father. An Ignazio who, very courageous, in observance of the diktat “the show must go on”, wanted to participate in the Sanremo Festival, even in the days of deep mourning, in order not to harm his companions, even he metaphorized the pain presenting himself with his head almost completely shaved.
On that occasion, the brotherly love of Gian and Piero was evident to everyone’s eyes, their eyes did not leave their partner for a moment, ready to encourage him, to caress him, to make him feel their attention even with a simple touch of the hand.
The photo published here can be said to represent the allegory of this brotherly love, of this continuous attention: Piero, during the concert dedicated to Morricone, has just named Vito, to whom he dedicated, up there in Heaven, the historic concert they are concluding, Ignazio is deeply moved, tries to swallow tears, to mask his emotion with that sweet wonderful smile that is his habitual: his companions surround him, embrace him, make him feel their closeness, but what is surprising is that they too are breaking up in tears, Gian is about to burst, Piero in the photo is from behind, but if you have the patience to go and see the video, you can see how he too has his face in a crying attitude.
This is why at the beginning I was talking about a lucky situation, about a meeting desired by destiny : these guys had many blessings in their lives, their families first of all, then their voice and their beauty. But among them there is also this very positive character, the ability to be brothers, to rejoice and feel pain for the same things, in short, to love each other deeply.
Credit to owners of all photos and videos.
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